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Lucie: The vehicle

May 2010. Part 1 of 1

For the first time this year Lucie was loaded up onto the trailer to attend a Reliant Owners Club rally in Nottingham.  Each time I use the trailer now the whole process of loading and strapping down is getting quicker and quicker, so much so that I end up double checking everything wondering why it has taken less time.

At the rally in Nottingham, once Lucie was unloaded we took her for a spin for a couple of miles just to blow away the cobwebs though every now and then she has an occasional back fire when she gets warm so I must get the timing sorted out. 

The Nottingham rally was held opposite the Bubblecar museum at Byards Leap in Cranwell and they currently have on loan a 1959 Reliant Regal Mk VI so it was interesting to park Lucie next to it and spot the differences, instantly noticeable is just how shallow the windscreen was on the Mk V and in addition the separate indicators and running lights at the front of the Mk V.

At the end of May, Lucie was back on the trailer again and taken over to the 52nd National Reliant rally in Bromsgrove.  This was particular interesting for me as there were also two other Mk VI vehicles going owned by Ray Sterling and Paul Dunn,  Given how many Mk VIs have survived and that only a handful are still on the road, to get three of them in one place was quite something.   I had a drive of Paul Dunn’s freshly restored 1960 Regal Mk VI saloon and I was amazed at just how quiet it was inside.  In Lucie I have no carpet or sound proofing so it looks as though that will make quite a difference.

During the day we parked all three Mk VIs next to each other for a photo shoot and the most obvious difference was the height of the saloons at the front compared with the van.  Ray measured from the chassis member to the top of the bonnet on each vehicle and the van was actually the same as one of the saloons so we concluded that it may be because the saloons have later Regal shocks at the front.  The rear springs differed to as the 1960 model had 2 leafs, the 1961 saloon 3 leafs and the van 4 leafs, though you would expect the van to have more to account for the extra weight it was carrying at the back.

Paul also noticed that the wipers on Lucie parked to the left whilst on the saloons they parked to the right. I noticed that on the Mk V the wipers also park to the left so wondered if the van is inheriting more parts from the Mk V.  (That or simply the last owner put them in).  Essentially the back of the van is identical to the Mk V van where as the back of the Mk VI saloon has quite a few changes.

During the rally Lucie ran great around the field and through the manoeuvrability competitions.  At the rally my brother also entered Lucie into the Regal class for Car of the Day and she came third.

Elvis Payne.

May 2010

Go to June 2010

This has to be one of my most favourite shots of Lucie yet.  This was taken by my girlfriend Caroline at the Nottingham rally.

Lucie with a 1959 Reliant Regal Mk V saloon.

Captured on film, me after checking that Lucie is secure on the trailer as seen by the rear facing “Black box” camera in my Jaguar.

Lucie with her sisters (Left to right) Connie - a 1960 Reliant Regal Mk VI saloon, and a 1961 Reliant Regal Mk VI saloon.

The back of the Regal Mk VI van compared with the Regal Mk VI saloon.


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